Just when all of our ‘firsts’ start to slow down – the firsts of our kids are exploding. i don’t know how they do it. i can’t get over how well kids roll with all that life throws at them in such a short period of time. first smile, first roll, first teeth, first steps, first foods, first words… fast forward 4 years to first full movie, first real play dates, first big bike rides, reading first words, and today … the first day of kindergarten.
I see what each of these things does for our kids. Their world gets bigger and the possibilities become endless with each new opportunity, each new first. Their little eyes widen with anticipation at what might be around the next corner. Their smiles grow with pride as they run a little further, ride a little faster, eat a little more, and create a little masterpiece. It’s exciting and fun and at time hilarious and at times heart breaking. The first time they fall hard, are rejected by a little friend, learn their own limitations, are hurt, or hurt someone else. Those first life lessons are not easy – and they come fast and furious. I look at our son and wonder sometimes how his head and heart can possibly hold so many thoughts and feelings . The number of ‘whys’ that come from his mouth, and the countless possible scenarios they trigger are awe-inspiring – and at times totally eghausting. The number of fears and hopes that he quietly holds in his heart all day – that come pouring out at bed time in the form of thoughtfully crafted questions and scenarios (at 9pm), astounds me.
Today is a huge first for us. Today is the first day Matthew starts kindergarten.
It’s the first time we truly give up control to another adult for his well being, and give over our most precious creation to other little people to play with, influence, and enjoy. We look forward to hearing about all the details he remembers, and will wait with ice-cream and big smiles to hear all of the stories and adventures that we can drag from him. We can’t wait to hear about all of his new little friends, and all of the things he learns about in circle time, and math time, and … recess. We know it’s a great school and a wonderful teacher. We hope he’ll learn how to eat faster at lunch time, and go to sleep earlier at bedtime so that he’ll have the energy to have fun and try everything. We pray he’s loved for who he is, and that he’s strong enough to be proud of who he is when he isn’t loved. We believe we’ve taught him the very basics of right and wrong, of respect and kindness. We acknowledge he is not patient, and is lazy, and both of those things will result in interesting life lessons. We know he’ll love to learn, and he’ll make friends. We dread the tears of heartbreak and the things he doesn’t understand. We ache for the days we could just pick him up and walk away … and keep him protected and loved in our arms… and we are filled with joy… he’s growing up – happy and healthy and kind and curious – just as he should be.
This firsts thing is tough… I don’t know how they do it. But more and more each day I don’t know how we do it either…
Today’s first is a wonderful one. We’re excited and we feel lucky that Matt gets to have this first on time – amidst so many little buddies who have their first day postponed this year. First day of kindergarten – here we come!
(this is Matty with Johnny – his new buddy :))